Vieux Farka Touré
The son of the late Malian guitarist Ali Farka Touré inherited his dad's dazzlingly fluid phrasing but clearly also digs the fiery African blues rock of bands like Tinariwen. Here, he joins American peers for a crossover set that slays, primarily because the players come to his music, not the other way around. Derek Trucks weaves in some raga-scented slide ("Aigna"), and jazz-fusion jammer John Scofield induces Mahavishnu Orchestra flashbacks ("Gido"). The biggest surprise, however, is South African-American Dave Matthews, whose deep-blue vocal turn on "All the Same" is a seamless cross-cultural moment. Note to the Dave Matthews Band: Make Touré an offer, dudes.
Listen to "The Secret (feat. Ali Farka Touré):"